Typhoon hits western Japan with record rainfall, killing two people

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A man walks on the street during heavy rain and wind caused by Typhoon Nanmadol in Kagoshima on Japan’s southernmost main island Kyushu on September 18, 2022, in this photo taken by Kyodo. Kyodo via REUTERS ATTENTION EDITORS – THIS IMAGE WAS PROVIDED BY A THIRD PARTY. COMPULSORY CREDIT. JAPAN OUT. NO COMMERCIAL OR EDITORIAL SALES IN JAPAN

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TOKYO, Sept 19 (Reuters) – Typhoon Nanmadol, one of the biggest storms to hit Japan in years, claimed at least two lives and brought high winds and record rainfall to the western part of the country on Monday , causing transportation disruptions and forcing manufacturers to suspend operations.

Prime Minister Fumio Kishida delayed his departure for New York for the United Nations General Assembly this week to assess the damage caused by Japan’s 14th typhoon of the season.

“I have postponed my scheduled departure from today to take stock of the damage caused by the typhoon and to take all possible recovery measures,” Kishida told reporters on Monday evening, adding that he would leave. Tuesday morning if conditions allowed.

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Nanmadol made landfall near the city of Kagoshima on Sunday evening before hitting the western island of Kyushu and roaring across the main island of Honshu on Monday morning.

A river in Kyushu’s Miyazaki prefecture overflowed, flooding fields and roads, footage from public broadcaster NHK showed. Another video showed a house on the edge of a river half-suspended over a torrent, the tin roof ripped off a gas station and a toppled billboard leaning over a street in the top of a building.

“We need to stay very alert for heavy rain, gale force winds, high waves and storm surge,” a Japan Meteorological Agency (JMA) official told a news conference.

Local media said a man was found dead inside his car, which was submerged to the roof in the middle of a field, while another man died after being caught in a landslide ground.

Another person is still missing and at least 115 people have been injured, NHK said.

About 286,000 households were without power on Monday afternoon, compared to some 340,000 households earlier in the day, the commerce ministry said.

Kyushu Railway Co (9142.T) said it halted high-speed and scheduled train operations, while Japan Airline Co Ltd (9201.T) and ANA Holdings (9202.T) canceled about 800 flights, NHK reported. .

The storm made landfall again in Shimane prefecture, western Honshu, after tracking the coastline earlier on Monday, and was heading east at around 35 km per hour (22 miles per hour), a indicated the JMA.

Up to 300 mm (11.8 inches) of rain was expected in the Tokai region of central Japan, the country’s industrial heartland, over a 24-hour period until Tuesday evening, it said .

Toyota Motor Corp (7203.T) suspended night shifts on 24 lines at 12 of its national plants on Monday, a company spokesperson said, adding that the company plans to compensate for lost production with overtime and holiday operations.

Intermittent bouts of heavy rain hit Tokyo, but businesses in the capital were largely operating normally.

Most schools were closed on Monday for a public holiday anyway.

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Reporting by Kiyoshi Takenaka and Kevin Buckland; Additional reporting by Kentaro Sugiyama, Sam Nussey, Maki Shiraki and Ritsuko Shimizu; Editing by Robert Birsel, Christian Schmollinger and Ed Osmond

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